Time flies and it’s already been about a month since we released version 1.01 of the Sync FPGA firmware for the Model 5401 Dante Master Clock. We recommend that all Model 5401 units be updated as soon as possible. Loading this update is not critical but is highly recommended.
Updating is done using the unit’s internal FTP (file transfer protocol) client which establishes a connection to the Studio Technologies’ FTP server. Assuming that network access to the “outside world” is available the process should take only a few minutes. After downloading the new file a reboot is required.
The new Sync FPGA firmware ONLY impacts the performance of the Model 5401 when it’s using an external bi-level analog (“black” or “black burst”) reference “sync” signal. With the new Sync FPGA firmware the time required to “lock” will typically be much less and there will be improvements to the synchronization stability.
To summarize, this change does not impact Model 5401 performance if a tri-level, word clock, or 10 MHz external reference is connected. But it does a nice job of improving performance in the specific case where a source of bi-level analog sync is connected.
At the same time that you update the Sync FPGA firmware you should ensure that your Model 5401 is running the latest version of the Application Firmware. Version 1.06 was released in September of 2018 and makes some nice improvements.